Craig Hignett is convinced Hartlepool United have the quality to cope without Carl Magnay.
It was confirmed yesterday that the 27-year-old will have to go under the knife after damaging his cruciate ligament in last weekend’s 0-0 draw with Mansfield.
While he is a loss to us we do have options at right-back.
And while Hignett admits losing Magnay for up to six months is a blow, he’s sure Pools have got enough class in their ranks to get by in the right-back’s absence.
The gaffer said: “It is a big blow.
“It is a long term one but there is nothing we can do about it now.
“While he is a loss to us we do have options at right-back.
“For all the positions, it is probably the one we could afford an injury.
“We have Liam Donnelly and we have got Jordan Richards who can cover at right-back.”
Hignett and the club’s medical staff had hoped the injury, which forced him off just before the break in the Stags stalemate, would not turn out to be too serious.
However, Magnay underwent a scan on Monday and results have confirmed the worst possible news for the full-back.
Hignett reckons the defender will come back stronger than ever from this.
He continued: “It’s a massive setback for us because he’s a big part of the squad.
“To lose him for such a length of time is terrible news and I am devastated for him but I have no doubt that he will come back stronger.
“He has had a serious injury like this before so he will know what is in front of him but he’s mentally strong and we’ll ensure he’s got the best medical support around him to aid his recovery.”
Pools head physiotherapist Ian Gallagher expained that Magnay will have to wait a little while before being booked in for surgery to rectify the problem. “Carl has ruptured the ACL and damaged other structures in his left knee joint,” he said.
“He had a scan in Darlington on Monday which confirmed our worst fears and now we will have to wait for the swelling to go down before he undergoes corrective surgery.
“Unfortunately, it means that he will be out for a minimum of six months but we will work closely with the surgeon after the operation and follow his protocols.
“Carl has been through this injury before with his other knee so he is aware of the hard work that lies ahead as we return him to fitness.
“It’s a huge blow for him and the club, but we will make sure he is in the best possible hands both in terms of his operation and then his subsequent rehabilitation.”